Are you suffering with sore knees?
It could be Patello-Femoral Joint Syndrome
Patello-Femoral Joint Syndrome is a common cause of knee pain, it might be that you are finding it painful to do squats, lunges, walk up stairs or it may just be from sitting for too long. The pain will be around your knee cap or feel like it’s under the knee cap.
What is it?
Essentially it is articular cartilage changes involving the under-surface of your knee cap or patella. The patella is supposed to slide, tilt or rotate in a specific way, which will not cause you pain but if there is an unbalance in the tracking of the patella, patello-femoral joint syndrome can occur.
So what causes it?
There are a number of a causes, you may have some soft tissue tightness of the quadricep muscles (vastus lateralis, rectus femoris), calf muscles (gastrocnemuis), hamstrings, or ITB (iliotibial band) which is a band of tissue that connects your hip to your knee. When this tightens it can start to pull your knee cap out of line. You may have a weak vastus medialis which is a quadricep muscle that sits medially to your knee cap or dysfunction of your hip abductors and gluteus medius.
It’s not only the muscles of the leg that can cause it but problems with your feet, how you walk or the footwear that you are using could be contributing to the problem also.
How do I fix it?
To fix this issue you see your physiotherapist as a first option, they will asses your biomechanics and advise if you need to see a podiatrist for orthotics. They combine treatment with a program and will work with your personal trainer to ensure that you are getting the most out of your personal training programme. Compliance with any physiotherapy programme is essential to recovery.
You can also see a remedial masseuse to release the tight muscles around your knee. Our masseuse, Nicola, is a remedial massage therapist and can assist in the rehabilitation of your PFJ after diagnosis.
Taping of your knee is also a good option to stabilise the kneecap and support the joint. Rocktape is a really great option as it is also a flexible tap that doesn’t cause as much irritation as sportstape. See www.rocktape.com.au for more details.
Personal training can assist in strengthening any muscle weaknesses, making specific modifications to your exercise programmes, and ensuring that you are not making your knee joints worse by doing the wrong exercises.
If you think that you may be suffering from PFJ, make sure you see your physiotherapist quickly to start recovery and always tell your personal trainer of any knee pain.
For more information on this or if you have any queries in relation to a programme for PFJ please contact us at Create Health & Fitness.
Create Health & Fitness service the following areas: Mt Hawthorn, Mt Lawley, Leederville, East Perth, Perth and surrounding areas, Joondalup and the northern suburbs. We are mobile, come to you and will find a programme to fit into your lifestyle.